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Bay Area Congressman John Garamendi Announces He Is Being Treated for Blood Cancer

a white man on an airplane wearing a protective mask

Rep. John Garamendi, seen in 2020, has cancer, which he said in a statement means he needs to take extra care to avoid diseases like COVID-19 and the flu. (U.S. Congress, Office of John Garamendi, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

By Tony Hicks
Bay City News

Congressman John Garamendi on Monday announced that he is receiving treatment for a type of blood cancer.

“Like 1.9 million Americans each year, I recently received the dreaded call from my doctor informing me that I had cancer,”

Garamendi wrote on social media. “I am thankful to have caught this early, and we are confident that I will soon be in remission.”

Garamendi, D-Fairfield, is in his eighth term in the U.S. House of Representatives. He said he has early-stage multiple myeloma, a type of blood cancer and is undergoing chemotherapy and immunotherapy at Kaiser Oncology in Sacramento.

Garamendi’s 8th district includes all or parts of Richmond, Hercules, Rodeo, Martinez, Vallejo, Bay Point, Pittsburg, Antioch and Fairfield.

“I have a long, long list of projects and goals for my district in the East Bay counties of Contra Costa and Solano,” Garamendi said, in a video posted on X. “So I will continue to work as I take the treatments. However, I’ve been cautioned by my doctors to reduce unnecessary exposure to avoid COVID-19, the flu and other viruses. In addition to destroying cancer cells, chemotherapy impairs natural antibodies and undermines the body’s immune system.”

Garamendi’s political career started in 1974, when he was elected to the first of four terms in the California State Legislature. From 1991 to 1995, and again from 2003 to 2006, Garamendi served as the California insurance commissioner.
He also served as deputy secretary of the interior under President Clinton and was elected California’s lieutenant governor in 2007. He was first elected to Congress in 2009.

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